By now, most everyone knows that Mexico is home to the world’s finest beaches, but today there is even more documented proof to back it up. Water quality, security, services, environmental education and infrastructure are but a few of the major criteria that will determine whether a beach can be awarded Blue Flag certification, a status recently attained by three of Cancun’s beaches.
Chac Mool, Las Perlas and Playa Delfines are the three beaches of Cancun that recently received the coveted designation, thanks in part to the region’s commitment to tourism infrastructure and growing popularity, resulting in a rising number of international travelers who come here each year for vacation. Situated in southeastern Mexico on the northeastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in the state of Quintana Roo, perched along Mexico’s only Caribbean coast, Cancun has long remained one of the travel industries leading innovators, providing a wealth of activities, excellent services and fantastic accommodations.
“Cancun will be the only tourist destination in the country with three certified beaches,” writes The Yucatan Times. “11 of Cancun’s beaches could receive the Blue Flag international certification by the end of 2014.”
Blue Flag awards are granted by the jury of the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE),which is made up of representatives from the United Nations Environment Program, the World Tourism Organization, the United Nations Educational, the Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.
“Borge said the international judges visited the beaches and scored them on 33 specifications before awarding the certification,” writes The Yucatan Times. “The Blue Flag certification will officially come into effect in July and is set to bring greater economic benefits to the area.”
In addition to the three locations in Cancun that were recently awarded the designation, the beaches of Chahue in Santa Maria Huatulco, El Chileno in Cabo San Lucas, El Palmar in Zihuatanejo de Azueta and Nuevo Vallarta Norte near Puerto Vallarta were recognized as world-class eco-friendly destinations by Blue Flag, which is a totally voluntary program that works to ensure sustainable development of beaches and marinas worldwide.
“These certifications are the result of the coordinated effort of the three levels of government, as well as the participation of civil society in favor of the conservation of natural resources, and are clear evidence that Mexican beaches are up to international standards,” writes SEMARNAT, Mexico’s Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources, in a press release. “This demonstrates that Mexico is able to compete on equal footing with other world-class destinations.”
Since Blue Flag beaches are spread throughout the country in Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations, the chances are good that you will be able to experience what the certification is all about no matter where you choose to go – from Cabo San Lucas on the Pacific Coast, to Cancun on the Caribbean Sea. Dubbed the “equivalent of an Oscar,” by Travel Weekly, the Blue Flag certification is an important accomplishment and shows Mexico’s commitment to sustainable tourism and world-class service in its most popular beachside communities.
Puerto Vallarta is reportedly busy readying two more beaches – Holi and Mismaloya – to receive the certification, while six additional Mexican state governments have announced that they will work to acquire this distinction before the end of 2014, according to Francisco Mass, sub-secretary of the Ministry of Tourism.
“As [more of] Mexico’s beaches obtain this distinction, the quality and quantity of tourism offerings will continue to rise,” shared Mass.
Tell us your favorite beach to visit in Mexico and why you love it in the comments section below!